New Delhi: Earlier today, India’s Foreign Secretary summoned the Pakistan High Commissioner Abdul Basit and handed over following demarche regarding Kulbhushan Jadhav, an Indian citizen, who has been awarded a death sentence by a Pakistani military court martial.
Drawing attention to the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) press release today, the demarche refers to Jadhav, who was kidnapped last year from Iran, while pointing out that his subsequent presence in Pakistan has never been explained credibly.
India, in a terse message, has reminded Pakistan that the Government of India, through its High Commission in Islamabad, has repeatedly sought consular access to him, as provided for by international law. Requests to that effect were formally made 13 times between 25 March 2016 and 31 March 2017. This was not permitted by the Pakistani authorities.
Further, India has told Pakistan that the proceedings that have led to the sentence against Jadhav are farcical in the absence of any credible evidence against him. It is significant that our High Commission was not even informed that Shri Jadhav was being brought to trial. Senior Pakistani figures have themselves cast doubt about the adequacy of evidence. The claim in the ISPR release that Shri Jadhav was provided with a defending officer during the so-called trial is clearly absurd in the circumstances.
If this sentence against an Indian citizen, awarded without observing basic norms of law and justice, is carried out, the Government and people of India will regard it as a case of premeditated murder, India has conveyed to Pakistan in categorical terms.